SURGERY SCHEDULED FOR 12/19/05

 

Have tried OptiFast, SlimFast and other weight loss programs over the last 25 years.  Have lost weight but ALWAYS gain it back plus more.  I am at my all time heaviest.  A friend just has RNY surgery a few years ago and I am very interested in this for myself. 

 

11/21/05 -- Surgery approved in less than 3 weeks of submission.  Yeah!!!  It is set for 12/19/05 but I have several different appointments to get through before that date.  Hopefully all my tests will get done in time so we don't have any delays in surgery.

 

12/1/05 -- Got thumbs from the cardiologist today.  One step closer.  Next test is on 12/6 -- EGD -- Upper GI. 

 

12/7/05 -- EGD went well yesterday.  I'm meeting with the dietician tomorrow for post-op diet instructions. 

 

12/8/05 -- Met for my post-op instructions.  Everything was very informative and I have done my shopping to have my post-op supplies on-hand. 

 

12/19/05 – Beginning weight – 352 lbs

 

12/28/05 -- It's been a while since I last posted an update.  Here I am 9 days post-op and doing well.  Surgery was on 12/19 around Noon.  I was back home by 12:30p on Tuesday afternoon.  So first let me describe my time in the hospital.

 

We arrived at Renaissance Hospital at 9:00a on Monday morning.  Around 9:20a I was taken back to the prep area to have my vitals recorded and get my lovely armband. 

 

I then waited in the waiting room with my husband for about 30 minutes before they returned for me to begin prepping me for surgery.  I donned the lovely fashionable gown (thankfully the perfect size for my large frame) and they got the IV started.  

 

After about 30 minutes I was wheeled up to the operating room where I met with my surgeon and anesthesiologist.  The surgeon essentially gave me one last chance to back out but I said I was ready. 

 

Within minutes I was rolled into the OR and moved onto this very narrow table with my arms outstretched and strapped down to those little padded boards.  That the last thing I remember. 

 

I woke up on the way to recovery but remember very little about recovery or being wheeled to ICU to my cubicle. 

 

I would say within an hour of making it to ICU I was awake and talking with my husband.  About 3-1/5 hours after surgery since the physical therapist was on the floor they asked me if I wanted to try to take my first walk.  I decided to be brave and make an attempt.

 

They had me get up from my left side which was a huge mistake.  When everyone says on this website that the left side hurts the most, they weren't kidding.  I did manage to stand up on the side of the bed but nearly passed out from the pain.  Obviously I wasn't ready so they put me back in the bed which was just as painful as getting out. 

 

They gave me a shot of morphine and I went to na-na land for a little while.  I also sent my husband home because that was no need for him to sit there and watch me sleep. 

 

Around 9p ish, my bladder decided to make itself known so I called for the nurse.  They decided I needed to walk the 30 feet to the bathroom.  Okay, so I put on my brave face and prepared for the pain again.  This time we got up from the right side of the bed.  It was still painful but at least a little more doable.

 

With the aide of a walker with wheels I managed to shuffle extremely slowly to the bathroom but I made it.  The embarrassing part was not being able to wipe myself afterwards and needed the assistance of the nurses.  They also gave me a quick sponge bath and changed my gown while there.  I then had to walk back to my bed.  (Here’s a helpful hint for when you get home:  Use a long wooden spoon and soft set wipes to take care of your personal bathroom needs. It really works and saves on the embarrassment of having someone else do it for you.)

 

Once at the bed I gingerly sat on the right side and they brought my first meal -- SF lime Popsicle, beef broth, orange Jello and tea.  I've never been a fan of lime popsicles but this one tasted awesome and I managed to eat the whole thing (very slowly).  I sipped a few spoons of the broth and took one bite of the Jello but that's all I could handle. 

 

Once I finished, that's when I encountered another problem.  I couldn't lie down -- the pain was just more than I could bear.  However, when I had the nurses raise the head of the bed to an almost sitting position I was able to lean back and they lifted my legs at the same time.  It was painful but at least I was able to get into the bed. Thankfully they could give me another shot of that wonderful pain med and I went to sleepy land again.

 

Around 3am I successfully made another trip to the bathroom and back plus got back into bed the same way as before. 

 

Key thing to remember in all this -- get up from the right side of the bed -- it really does make it slightly easier and keep the head of your bed as high as possible when getting back in the bed then lower it to a comfortable position. 

 

Breakfast was an Orange Popsicle, beef broth, and lemon Jello.  This time I decided to eat 1/2 of the Popsicle, 1/4 of the broth and 1/4 of the Jello.

 

After breakfast I made another trip to the bathroom (this time without the walker) and then they gave me my last dose of pain med which was to last until I got home.  I slept for a few hours and woke up to get dressed and prepared to go home.  I needed help getting my lower half dressed because I couldn't bend.  I was dressed and ready to leave by 11:00a.  It took a while for the Dr. to return to write out my release and prescription but by 12:30p I was back at home. 

 

Needless to say the ride home was uncomfortable.  Then I had the long walk from the car into the house.  I had already decided that I would be spending most of my time in the one chair we have in our living room with my fit on the ottoman.  It is a comfortable chair. 

 

I spent the first night in the chair in the living room.  That was okay but gave me a crick in my neck.  After that I managed to sleep in my bed on my back (not easy for a normal stomach sleeper).  I had to have help getting out of the bed for close to two weeks. 

 

On January 3rd I had my first post-op visit.  Two weeks after surgery I had lost 17 pounds (still had significant pain, though).  They told me that was normal and to be patient.  Thankfully the pain only lasted for about 5 more days. 

 

On January 9th I returned to work full-time.  I still get tired ½ way through the day and have take a short nap.  But since I work from home this really isn’t a problem. 

 

I’m now walking ½ mile a day (not bad for someone my size).  But I do struggle to get in all the liquids everyday.   I just don’t have the capacity plus I really hate drinking water and have to force myself to drink it.  I miss drinking real tea.

 

I’m still on soft foods but so far haven’t found anything that makes me sick.  I have realized that I have to learn when I’m full.  I’ve come close to losing whatever I have eaten but haven’t actually lost it (thankfully). 

 

I go for my one-month checkup on January 26th.  I’ll post another update after that visit. 

 

1/20/06 -- It's been exactly one month and one day since surgery.  I'm doing great.  I'm on regular foods now and haven't had any problems.  My home scale says I've lost 31 lbs since surgery.  My clothes are definitely getting loose.  Thankfully I have a dear friend who has given me clothes which should last me through about 80 lbs of weight loss. 

 

The only thing that I'm struggling with is fatigue.  By the end of the work day I'm exhausted.  I'm hoping the B12 shots I'll start getting next week will help with this.  I'm walking almost everyday and will begin working with a personal trainer next week to tone muscles so I can hopefully avoid extensive plastic surgery. 

 

1/21/06 – Okay I had my first “dumping” episode this morning.  I can tell you for sure that I never want that to happen again.  It happened immediately after breakfast.  My breakfast consisted of 1 over-medium egg, 1 very small sausage link, ½ biscuit and 1 slice of tomato.  I have eaten all of these foods before just not all at the same time.  Anyway, I got about 2/3 finish eating when I got extremely nauseous, light headed, my heart was racing and I had a cold sweat.  My heart was racing so fast I serious thought I might have a heart attack.  I tried to lie down and use my deep breathing exercises to get the nausea to pass, but that didn’t work.  Then I felt the need to throw up.  However, all I did was gag and only mucus came out.  It was very unpleasant.  It took me two hours to recover from this episode.  I’m not exactly sure what caused it other than I either ate too much or the combination of food I was eating just didn’t work together.  So the moral of the story is you don’t want to dump – it isn’t fun.

 

1/25/06 -- It's been just over 5 weeks since surgery and I have lost 31 lbs.  Yeah!!!  I have also joined a fitness club to begin circuit training and working with a personal trainer so I can tone my muscles and hopefully minimize plastic surgery.  I can't get through the entire course yet but it's getting easier.  I plan to spend at least 3 days a week working with the personal trainer.  I'm also walking 5-6 days a week (although I can only go about 3/4 of mile).  But it's amazing that just losing this small amount of weight allows me to move so much easier.  I can't wait until that scale drops below 300.  That'll be a day of celebration.  I haven't been below 300 in 6 years.  My 15 year old daughter has never seen me anything but super overweight. 

 

2/24/06 – I’ve been working out at the fitness club for a month.  I have my first weigh and measure day since joining.  After 17 visits to the gym in the month of February I lost 10 lbs (8.14 fat lbs) and lost of a total of 16-1/2 inches.  I can’t tell you excited I was when I got the results.

 

I also finally figured out how to get in all my 64 oz of fluid each day.  I know almost exclusive drink ice water all day long.  I take a water bottle and fill it 1/3 full and then freeze it.  Once it is frozen I fill it up with water to make it ice cold.  Then I can drink it without getting nauseous and have no problem drinking 64 oz or more every day.  Occasionally I might add Crystal Light to it but I have found that I really prefer the ice cold water.  I’m also down two full sizes in clothing so I got rid of all the larger size – never to worn by me again.  Yeah!!!

 

3/10/06 – Got on the scale this morning and was so excited to see that I have hit the 50 lb mark.  I had hoped and worked hard to make that mark by my 3 month anniversary.  Well I’ve made it 9 days ahead of schedule.  I go for my 3-month checkup on March 22 for my “official” weigh in. 

 

I continue to work out at the gym almost everyday and it is really make a huge difference in my energy level.  I actually feel deprived when I can’t go to the gym first thing in the morning.  It really makes my day go so much better.  I’m surprised by how much I really enjoy the exercising.  I never in my wildest dreams thought I would actually look forward to going to the gym every morning. 

 

4/25/06 - It's been a little over 4 months since surgery and I have lost 69 lbs!  Yeah!!!!

 

5/25/06 - 5 months post op -- 80 lbs lost (total of 45 inches lost from neck to my calves) 

  07/05/06 -- 6-1/2 months post op.

I HIT THE CENTURY MARK TODAY!!  100 LBS LOST!!!

09/09/06 -- It has been nine months since my surgery and I have now lost 120 lbs.  I feel great and look even better.  When I look at my pictorial progress I am amazed that it’s me.  I’m ashamed to admit that I ever got that big but know that I am now much healthier and will never return to that blob of a person.
 

Some new things that are now part of my life is I rarely wear black!  Black is a camouflage for imperfections and I am so proud of the way I look I wear color.  When something gets slightly baggy, I immediately stop wearing it.  I learned that it boosts my morale when I wear form-fitting clothing.  I also won’t step foot in any store that caters specifically to large people.  Not that there is anything wrong with those stores.  They served me well for many years.  But you cannot believe what a delight it is to go into a store with my teenage daughter and be able to buy clothes in the same store with her.  Granted she is shopping in the junior department and I’m in the Misses department, but it is still fun.  Did you know that “normal” clothes are cheaper than the larger ones?  I’m also wearing heels again so my feet look good, too.
 

I recently went to Open House at my daughter’s high school and was thrilled to be able to sit in a student desk (with room to spare).  I have taken over some of my husband’s t-shirts because they fit me.  My husband is 6’ 1” tall and weighs 168 lbs.  He has a few L t-shirts and they are now mine.  He saw one of his shirts on me and asked why I was wearing it.  To which I replied “because I can.”  

Overall I have lost 71.5 inches (neck to calves).  Granted the weight is much slower now, but I’m healthier and comfortable with my progress.  


To those of you considering this journey, DO NOT HESITATE.  Do it now!!! I promise you won’t regret it as long as you commit yourself to making changes in your life.  Here are three things I suggest you consider to be successful: change your lifestyle and attitude, get in a good exercise program, and eat healthy.  The surgery is just a tool; it’s not a cure. Behaving yourself and making this a life-long, lifestyle change will greatly improve your life.  I have no regrets.

About Me
Katy, TX
Location
31.5
BMI
Jun 18, 2001
Member Since

Friends 2

Latest Blog 4
9/28/07--The Realities of RNY
09/23/07--EGD Results
09/16/07-21 months post ops
06/06/07 -- 18 months around the corner

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